Side by Side by Ruthie – A Quick Chat With Ruthie Henshall

West End and Broadway Star Ruthie Henshall is heading Down Under this week to headline the upcoming charity performance of Side By Side By Sondheim at Sydney’s Theatre Royal.

We caught up with Ruthie for a quick chat about her trip to Australia and her involvement in this special charity concert, supporting The White Ribbon Foundation – Australia’s campaign to stop violence against women.

Ruthie Henshall
Ruthie Henshall - image by Ryan Harding

Is this your first trip to Australia?

What are you most looking forward to doing when you’re in town?
Meeting some of the Australian theatre community.

It’s such a flying visit this time around – any plans to return?
Apparently I will never want to leave once I get there so I guess I will not need to return!

What is your favourite Stephen Sondheim piece?
Into The Woods

What is it about Sondheim’s work that you admire?
He writes music as well as he writes lyrics and he touches the soul with the feelings he writes about.

Can you tell us about some of the numbers you’re performing in the Side By Side By Sondheim charity concert on Friday 20 April?
I’m singing ‘Broadway Baby’, ‘Send In The Clowns’ and ‘Losing My Mind’.

What has been your biggest career highlight so far?
Crazy For You. It was the MGM musicals that inspired me when I was a girl so it was like performing in an MGM film on stage. I always felt like I had been born in the wrong era.

Who/what inspires you?
Judi Dench, Judy Garland, Gene Kelly.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A star of stage.

Who is the most important person in the world to you?
My children, then my Daddy.

What was the first piece of theatre/film/TV you appeared in and how old were you?
Clacton summer season,19 years old.

Windows or Mac?
Mac all the way

Favourite food?
Macaroni cheese

Who is the actor you would most like to work alongside?
Judi Dench or Jodie Foster.

Name one moment when you looked around, breathed happily and felt content?
Pregnant with Lily, my first child, and looking back on what I had done.

Where is the most interesting place you have travelled?

What is the most embarrassing thing that’s ever happened to you on stage?
Forgetting lyrics and having to stop the orchestra and start again!

What’s your life motto?
Take the risk.

Side By Side by Ruthie

Ruthie Henshall will be appearing onstage along side some of Australia’s brightest music theatre talent at the Theatre Royal, Sydney on Friday 20 April, as previously announced on

Also appearing in the concert will be:
Rachael Beck, Peter Cousens, Margi de Ferranti, Michael Falzon, Ben Lewis, Stephen Mahy, Enda Markey, Amanda Muggleton, Anna O’Byrne, Geraldine Turner, Mitchell Butel, Alinta Chidzey, Helen Dallimore, Lucy Durack, Melissa Langton, Lara Mulcahy, Josh Piterman, Shaun Rennie, Belinda Wollaston, Erin James, Elise McCann, Anita Plateris, Meow Meow, Garry Scale and Lyn Shakespeare!

Narrating the show will be some of Australia’s most well-known television stars, including Paula Duncan, Judy Nunn, Andrew O’Keefe, Jessica Rowe, and Bruce Venables.

All proceeds will go to The White Ribbon Foundation, and tickets can be purchased through

Erin James

Erin James is's former Editor in Chief and a performer on both stage and screen. Credits include My Fair Lady, South Pacific and The King and I (Opera Australia), Love Never Dies and Cats (Really Useful Group), Blood Brothers (Enda Markey Presents), A Place To Call Home (Foxtel/Channel 7) and the feature film The Little Death (written and directed by Josh Lawson).

Erin James

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